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Concern over lack of sidewalk clearing enforcement in Redcliff

Posted on March 14, 2024 by Ryan Dahlman

By Brylan Span

Redcliff resident Tom Dewalt raised significant concerns regarding the lack of enforcement of sidewalk clearing bylaws at a recent council meeting, citing it as a crucial safety issue within the community.

“I believe that many residents feel that the peace officer is supposed to be dealing with snow covered sidewalks without having to file a complaint.” Dewalt expressed passionately. He sighted a need for being proactive, versus waiting for complaints to roll in.

Dewalt highlighted the frustration shared by many residents regarding the time it takes for some property owners to clear snow, if they even do so at all. “It has taken reporting the same property two, three, even four times before the sidewalk was fully cleared. Some property owners are being reported after every snowfall, and it’s been happening for years,” he stated.

The lack of consequences for non-compliance is a major point of contention for Dewalt and other concerned citizens. “It seems clear that these property owners have not faced any consequences, or they would be doing it,” he asserted.

Dewalt emphasised the serious safety implications of snow or ice-covered sidewalks. “Having snow or ice-covered sidewalks is a serious safety concern,” he stated. “It saddens me to hear the amount of people who attend the Redcliff Senior Centre for exercise and say, ‘I’d like to walk here, but the sidewalks are too dangerous.’ or ‘I walk on the road because it’s safer,’ or ‘I walk in back alleys because the sidewalks are too treacherous.’”

Dewalt recounted a distressing incident he witnessed involving a woman pushing a baby stroller onto the road to bypass a snow-covered, ice-covered sidewalk, further highlighting the urgency of the situation. “This needs to get dealt with sooner rather than later, before someone gets seriously hurt, disabled, or possibly worse,” he urged.

The sentiment among residents is one of frustration and disillusionment with the lack of enforcement. “Most residents of the town feel like the enforcement of this bylaw is a joke,” Dewalt lamented. “It needs to be addressed because it’s a yearly issue with every snowfall.”

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